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Southeastern Conference Weekend Preview: Top Seed on Line

Four Teams Separated by One Game at Top of Standings

Despite some recent upsets and some near misses, the final day of the Southeastern Conference regular season has No. 5 Auburn leading No. 14 Arkansas, No. 7 Kentucky and No. 13 Tennessee by one game.

Auburn and Arkansas narrowly escaped upset bids on Wednesday night to set up a wild Saturday.

SEC Conference Weekend Preview

Kentucky (+650) and Auburn (+1000) are among the teams with the best odds to win the national championship. Arkansas (+5000), Tennessee (+5000), Alabama (+6000) and LSU (+7000) are other SEC contenders listed in the March Madness odds.

Here’s a look at this weekend’s games in the SEC with some information for those who bet online.

Arkansas Razorbacks vs Tennessee Volunteers

Date, time, TV: Saturday, Noon ET, ESPN

This is a matchup of a pair of programs playing their best basketball recently.

Arkansas has won 14 of its last 15 games, including the last five after its one-point win over Louisiana State on Wednesday. The Razorbacks are 9-1-1 against the spread in their last 11 games.

Tennessee (22-7, 13-4) has won eight of its last nine, including three in a row, with four of the Volunteers’ last five games going under the total. Tennessee is one of three SEC teams with perfect home records.

Arkansas (24-6, 13-4) has won two of the last three games against Tennessee, including a 10-point home win on Feb. 19 as a two-point favorite according to the college basketball spreads. The Razorbacks have covered in each of the last three meetings.

Tennessee has won the last three times Arkansas traveled to Knoxville while seven of the last eight games between the teams went over the total.

Tennessee’s Kennedy Chandler and JD Notae of Arkansas rank first and second in the SEC in steals per game.

Alabama Crimson Tide vs Louisiana State Tigers

Date, time, TV: Saturday, Noon ET, CBS

Alabama has won five games in a row against LSU, although the Tigers covered against the Las Vegas odds in the last two. The last two games between the teams have been decided by a total of four points, including Alabama’s 70-67 home win on Jan. 19 as a 4½-point favorite.

Alabama (19-11, 9-8) is coming off a 16-point loss to Texas AM on Wednesday. The Crimson Tide had won five of their previous six games but that loss dropped them to 1-5 against the spread in the last six contests.

LSU (20-10, 8-9) nearly pulled off an upset that would have aided its chances to be a part of the March Madness bracket, but Xavier Pinson’s shot at the buzzer was no good as Arkansas survived with a 77-76 win.

Alabama committed 19 turnovers in the loss to Texas AM and now faces an LSU team that leads the SEC with an average of 11 steals per game.

South Carolina Gamecocks vs Auburn Tigers

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 1 p.m. ET, SEC Network

Auburn has won four in a row against South Carolina. including the 81-66 road win on Jan. 4 as an 8½-point favorite. The Tigers have covered in each of those victories. The average margin of victory in the last three games has been 17 points.

Auburn (26-4, 14-3) needed overtime to avoid an upset by Mississippi State on Wednesday. It didn’t hurt that Mississippi State was 0 for 13 from 3-point range.

South Carolina (18-11, 9-8) has won five of its last six games to move over the .500 mark in conference play. The Gamecocks are 5-2 against the spread in their last seven games while nine of the last 10 contests have gone over the total.

Auburn leads the SEC with an average of 63.4 field goal attempts per game while South Carolina is last in the conference with 11.8 made free throws per game.

Kentucky Wildcats vs Florida Gators

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 2 p.m. ET, CBS

Kentucky has dropped its last two road games and will look to break that trend against Florida. Kentucky is just 2-4-1 against the spread in its last seven games while three of the last four contests went over the total.

Kentucky (+150) and Auburn (+225) rank second and fourth in the odds to reach the Final Four. Tennessee (+1100), Arkansas (+1400), Alabama (+1600) and LSU (+1600) are among the SEC teams in the top 20 of the March Madness predictions.

Kentucky (24-6, 13-4) has won six of the last seven games against Florida and covered in five of them, including the 78-57 win on Feb. 12 when the Wildcats were favored by 10 points at home. Kentucky has won three in a row at Florida and in its last trip to Gainesville, the Wildcats rolled to an 18-point victory.

Florida (19-11, 9-8) has won three of its last four games and covered in each of those wins. Each of the Gators’ last three games went over the total.

Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe and Colin Castleton are first and second in the SEC in field goal percentage and are two of the top three rebounders in the conference.

Georgia Bulldogs vs Missouri Tigers

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network

Something will have to give in this one as two teams in dire need of a positive result heading into the SEC tournament will be squaring off.

Missouri (10-20, 4-13) has lost six straight and failed to cover in four of those games to fall into a tie for 12th place in the SEC standings.

Last-place Georgia (6-24, 1-16) has lost 10 straight games and has been the underdog in all 17 games played in 2022.

Missouri has won four of the last five meetings against Georgia, although the Bulldogs covered in each of the last three. Seven of the last nine games between the teams went under the total.

Don’t be looking for a 3-point shooting contest as only Kentucky and Mississippi State attempt fewer 3-pointers per game than the Bulldogs and Tigers.

Vanderbilt Commodores vs Ole Miss Rebels

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 6 p.m. ET, SEC Network

Ole Miss has won three of the last four meetings with Vanderbilt and covered in each of those wins. Five of the last eight games in the series went over the total.

Vanderbilt (14-15, 6-11) is 7-1-1 against the spread in its last nine games. Unfortunately, the Commodores have dropped five of its last six games while nine of the last 10 went over the total.

Ole Miss (13-17, 4-13) has lost seven of its last eight games, although the Rebels have covered in three of the last four. The last seven Ole Miss games have gone over the total. The Rebels are 10-7 at home.

Vanderbilt, despite Scotty Pippen Jr. leading the SEC in scoring, is 12th in the SEC in scoring offense while Ole Miss is 13th.

Mississippi State Bulldogs vs Texas AM Aggies

Date, time, TV: Saturday, 8:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network

Texas AM can move to .500 in SEC play with a victory. It would be the Aggies’ fourth win in a row including an impressive 16-point win at Alabama as a 10-point underdog on Wednesday.

Texas AM (19-11, 8-9) is also 4-1 against the spread in those games while its last four went over the total.

Mississippi State (17-13, 8-9) has won four of the last six games against Texas AM and is 7-2-1 against the spread in the last 10.

The Bulldogs have failed to cover in their last four games, although they extended SEC-leading Auburn to overtime on Wednesday.

Texas AM is second in the SEC with 10.4 steals per game while Mississippi State comes up with 8.1 steals per contest.

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